Hello Dear Readers! Things are going well in Kasambiika 1. In this post I will cover some of the challenges and successes that we have encountered in our programming.
|A Kasambika sunrise|
We have conducted four sensitizations so far: nutrition, family planning, malaria, and male family planning. Male family planning was not attended well. And by not attended well, we mean no one showed up.
|Nathan and Tina despondent at the turn-out to the male family planning sensitization.|
Yet no one showed up. On our walk back to our home a man suggested that the caprices of village life had prevented people from coming, that tending fields took priority over our meeting. Yet we got the sense from questioning our VHTs and talking to other community members that there was a lack of interest in our programming and message. Disheartening, right?
We bounced back with a successful malaria sensitization.
|Raphael explaining the proper way to hang a mosquito net.|
|Recording the sale of nets|
|A perfect high five|
We plan on doing another family planning information session targeting the entire community, and we’ll report back on the success of that pursuit.
Another challenge that we faced was implementing our school tippy tap project (if you forgot what a tippy tap was, check our previous blog post). We, the Kasambiika 1 and 2 intern teams, were tasked with using a grant from the Baltimore Rotary Club to fund the construction of six tippy taps at the Kasambika Primary School. We first met with the children and worked with them and the school administrators to build tippy taps. We taught the younger kids the song “Naaba Mungalo” (Wash Your Hands, sung in Lusoga to Frere Jacques) which is repeatedly sung by all village children everywhere. But soon the project ran into trouble. The soap was stolen within days, and the tippy taps were often empty, even though a special prefect had been appointed to re-fill them each day.
We identified the problems and started working on solutions, which is part of our goal while implementing this pilot project. Getting water to repeatedly refill the tippy taps was tedious and too difficult for one student. Bigger jerry cans for the tippy taps would help ease the stress of the tippy tap prefect and his new team’s job. Getting water from the borehole throughout the day is tiring and interrupts schooling. Filling two 100 liter water drums early in the morning for filling the tippy taps was more manageable. Soap was not sustainable. Readily-available and effective ash could be used instead. And the 3 liter jerry cans that we are replacing with the 5 liter jerry cans would be apt holders for the soap substitute.
We bought the drums and 5 liter jerry cans, and we are almost ready for construction. One significant obstacle remains. Recently the school borehole went out of commission. Community leaders have removed the handle until fixes can be made, which will not happen until Kasambika can foot the bill. We are pursuing a resolution to this situation.
|A dry, deserted, broken borehole. Not the happiest sight.|
We held a soccer game to distribute condoms to young men. Many young men (we found this meant ages 18-30ish, or at least old enough to play in the football match) showed up. During half-time we demonstrated proper condom use using a matooke (unripe plantain), and talked to the guys about avoiding HIV, STI, and unwanted pregnancies. After the game they took the 250 plus condoms we brought with us.
|Hanging out by the goal post.|
|Raphael and I played too. The young
men of Kasambika 1 are very good “footballers.” |
|They also spent time with some of the other onlookers.|
Best wishes until next time!